Saint Alphonsus Health System

Stereotaxis EPOCH Magnetic Navigation, heart disease

Idaho residents now have access to a state-of-the-art cardiovascular therapy called Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation.

Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise is the only hospital in Idaho to offer this treatment, which is a safer and less invasive alternative than many traditional manual and mechanical therapies.

Learn more about Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation for the treatment of irregular heartbeat

This groundbreaking system is used to treat a number of heart irregularities, including:

  • Irregular heartbeat due to arrhythmias (such as atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter) and supraventricular tachycardias.
  • Cardiac resynchronization therapy.
  • Complex coronary artery disease, including total occlusions.

In many cases, these treatments would have required conventional methods that are so complex that they could be performed by only a small number of physicians and hospitals. Our system gives Idaho residents access to this technology close to their home.

How Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation works

Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation technology uses computer-controlled magnets—positioned outside the body—to steer catheters and guidewires through the delicate cardiovascular system. With computer assistance for precise navigation, the doctor is able to focus on the patient and the outcome rather than the mechanics of the procedure.

Benefits of Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation

Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation offers innovation in healing by providing gentle access to remote areas of the heart that were previously difficult to reach. This technology opens up a new avenue of care for some patients who would otherwise need highly invasive surgery. It can also help patients who have atrial fibrillation or other arrhythmias who would previously have had to rely on drug therapy alone, which may only partly address their symptoms.

Other benefits of Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation include:

  • Shorter procedures and faster recovery times.
  • Less exposure to x-ray radiation and dyes.
  • Reduced risk of serious complications from perforation of blood vessels or heart tissue.
  • Reduced likelihood of referral to highly invasive open-heart surgery.
  • Treatment of highly complex conditions, such as atrial arrhythmias, ventricular tachycardia and congenital heart disease.

Common Conditions treated with Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation

What is Arrhythmia?

An arrhythmia is an irregular heart beat – the heart may beat too fast, too slow or with an irregular rhythm. Arrhythmias are heart rhythm problems that affect many people around the world, some are harmless and some are debilitating.

What is Atrial Fibrillation?

Atrial fibrillation is an irregular and often rapid heart rate that commonly causes poor blood flow to the body. During atrial fibrillation, the heart's two upper chambers (the atria) beat chaotically and irregularly – out of coordination with the two lower chambers (the ventricles) of the heart. Symptoms include heart palpitations, shortness of breath and weakness.

Episodes of atrial fibrillation can come and go, or you may have chronic atrial fibrillation. Although atrial fibrillation itself isn't life-threatening, it is a serious medical condition that sometimes requires emergency treatment. It can lead to complications.

What is Tachycardia?

Tachycardia is a faster than average resting heart rate. The heart rate of a resting or sleeping individual is faster than it should be. Normal heart rate is primarily based on a person's age. This condition can be very dangerous, depending on how hard the heart is forced to work.

Learn more about Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation

If you have an irregular heartbeat caused by an arrhythmia like atrial fibrillation, call 208-367-BEAT (2328) for more information about Stereotaxis EPOCH Robotic Navigation at Saint Alphonsus.


Margot Vloka, MD

Margot Vloka, MD

Education: Medical University of Warsaw
Residency: St. Luke's - Roosevelt Hospital Center, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
Fellowship: St. Luke's - Roosevelt Hospital Center, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
Board-certified: Clinical Electrophysiology, Cardiovascular Disease, Hospital and Palliative Medicine, Internal Medicine
Call 208-367-2328 to schedule an appointment.

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